Today's poem is by Roddy Lumsden


Hours, minutes. The smiles which women
save for children.          The plot left open.
Swallow leagues, chasm inches. Rain in
mid-air. Wedding favors. Pepper flakes.
Brown-cornered pages of torn paperbacks.
The systems of abandon. Toes, toothpicks.

Ambitions dealt face up. Full stops. Thrips.
Maids of dishonor, milk teeth, bottletops.
Bubbles in pumice or weir.          Wire-knots.
Mongrel times. A pluralist now. Roof tiles,
ball bearings, whetted nails. Tight coils
of hair. Cowries knocking. Snow quills.

Rivets. Coffins. Frays. A sigh then silence.
Cat's eyes. Mothers and bezoars. Always
divided by always again. Tumbled starlings.
Small change. Surf churn. Small changes.
Hormonal kites sent up.          Half-chances.
Hopes, summers, sad rooms. Beads, hinges.

Copyright © 2010 Roddy Lumsden All rights reserved
from The Manhattan Review
Reprinted by Verse Daily® with permission

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